Possum Point

Locally produced television comedy is getting a boost thanks to funding decisions made at NZ On Air’s February meeting.

Almost $2.5 million worth of NZ On Air funding was approved for a slew of comedy programmes that will be turning up on screens around the country in coming months.

“The proposals for these programmes were terrific,” NZ On Air Chief Executive Jane Wrightson said, “and we’re looking forward to seeing the results. There’s an excellent variety of projects and programme makers involved.”

Funding has been allocated to Paradise, a 13-part situation comedy series set in a backpackers hostel run by a zany bunch of twenty-somethings.

“The premise behind Paradise means there will be plenty of potential for some real fun on screen,” said Ms Wrightson. “And as well as that we’re happy to have been able to give the nod to a couple of returning comedy series – Moon TV and Pop! Goes the Weasel.

“Production will begin soon on an eight-part sketch comedy series called Possum Point, which will bring us a special brand of silliness from comedians The Comedy Pilots, and there’s also a stand-up comedy special called AotearoHa, a showcase for some of the best New Zealand comedy talent.

“It’s a very good time for New Zealand comedy at the moment, and it’s great to see the free-to-air networks’ enthusiasm for having new programmes, and those that have already found a ready audience, on their screens,” she said.